If you have spent time in our art healthcare program, Arterie, perhaps you had the pleasure of meeting Jennie Connolly. A highly skilled lace maker who was generous with her time and sharing her talent, Jennie was often found teaching the novice knitter the perfect garter stitch and bind-off or creating one of her signature art pieces like Emi the Elephant (pictured above).
Jennie was also a patient with ovarian cancer at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse and sadly she passed away in June 2018. In the months before her passing, Jennie made a decision that will help to improve outcomes for the thousands of women diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year.
“Jennie was a very particular person and in leaving her house to Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, she would be comforted that her gift will help a lot of people. When she found out that her cancer had spread, it was important for her to get her affairs in order. I know she found such a sense of relief once everything was arranged,” says good friend and fellow Arterie member, Yvonne.
Chris O’Brien Lifehouse also recently appointed a deputy director of gynae-oncology, Dr Rhonda Farrell, a position funded through philanthropy. “I’m honoured by Jennie’s incredibly generous gift towards ovarian cancer research. Chris O’Brien Lifehouse is developing a recognised state centre for clinical trials in gynaecological cancer, and our goal is to commence some exciting new trials for ovarian cancer. Our patients are kept at the forefront of the latest advancements in surgery and systemic treatments. Jennie’s gift will enable us to carry out research that will inform and transform the way we treat this aggressive cancer, ultimately improving outcomes for patients,” says Dr Farrell.
Jennie’s legacy lives on in the hearts of those who had the pleasure of knowing her and calling her their friend. It will also live on in all of those who will never know her but who will benefit from the gift of hope that she left behind.
From everyone at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, thank you Jennie.
To learn more about leaving a gift in your Will, please contact David Dubin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 02 8514 0611.